Menu Picture of three small lines that users click on to reveal a list of links

More from news and media Picture of three small lines which when clicked on activate a menu with links to other pages

Virtual fracture clinic highly commended in national healthcare awards

Posted: 26 November 2021

Picture of staff at ceremonies

West Hertfordshire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust were national finalists at this year’s Health Service Journal (HSJ) Awards where they received a Highly Commended for their innovative orthopaedic ‘virtual fracture clinic’ and e-referral system.

The trust’s trauma and orthopaedic department were shortlisted in the ‘Driving efficiency through technology’ award for using technology to create a system in which clinicians could communicate digitally and see patients virtually.

The revolutionary system enables the team to manage minor orthopaedic cases virtually, by viewing admissions, operations and theatre scheduling in a cloud-based system, removing the need for some face-to-face fracture assessment attendances.

The results of the initiative were outstanding. 90% of patients reported satisfaction with the virtual fracture clinic process. The initiative also resulted in a 50% reduction in face-to-face follow-up appointments and saved 3,000 bed days per year.

The use of e-referrals dramatically improved patient care as 70% of patients were reviewed and provided with a specialist treatment plan within 60 minutes of referral.

The simple and user friendly e-referral system has also helped administrative staff to chase tasks such as booking follow up appointments and arranging surgical lists. All these results were captured within a three-month period.

Mr Krisztian Deierl, orthopaedic trauma lead, said: “We are delighted our 'digital virtual fracture clinic' and 'bleep free referral system' for trauma patients has been highly commended at the prestigious HSJ awards. The solution has enabled us to provide efficient and effective treatment, whilst keeping patients safe and reducing the pressure on our health service.”


  1. For more information, please contact the communications team on: 01923 436280 or email: Out of hours, please call the Watford General Hospital switchboard on 01923 244366 and ask for the on call communications manager.
  2. West Hertfordshire Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust serves people from across Hertfordshire, north London and further afield. It operates from three hospitals; Watford General, St Albans City and Hemel Hempstead. The trust has a catchment area of over 500,000 people and is one of the largest employers locally, with around 5,000 staff and volunteers.
  3.  For more information about our hospitals, visit You can also join our followers on Twitter ( and find us on Facebook (